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From: "Urash, Tom" <turash@firstam.com>
Subject: (urth) FW: The Parliament of the Birds
Date: Fri, 05 May 2000 07:46:58 

Pardon me if you've received this already...

> The Parliament of the Birds is purportedly of Sufi origin (Persia being
> for many centuries the most Sufic of all the Islamic world), and the
> influence of the Sufis, operating under the veil of Islam, was quite
> profound in Europe despite its rather esoteric workings. Sufism came
> naturally into Spain with the occupation by and trade with the North
> African Arabs and again during the Crusades. 
> Idres Shah's "The Sufis" is a remarkable book and goes into quite a bit of
> detail concerning Sufi influences on quite a number of Europeans of
> historical times, several of whom may surprise you. Many of the so called
> "teaching stories" used by the Sufi masters have found their way into our
> culture though not always readily recognizable and almost never credited.
> I suspect Gene Wolfe, though certainly not to the degree of Doris Lessing,
> has been influenced by the Sufis and the multi-leveled "meanings" so
> prevalent in their teaching stories... tom
> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Alice Turner [SMTP:akt@attglobal.net]
> Sent:	Wednesday, May 03, 2000 10:08 PM
> To:	urth@lists.best.com
> Subject:	(urth) Re: Digest urth.v028.n198
> From the Kind and Helpful Ratso (what a paradox!)!
> > "I came upon a Persian parable called _The Parliament of the Birds_,
> which
> > supplied me with a plot remarkably -- uncannily -- suited to what I
> had
> > altready thought up.
> For heavens's sake! Chaucer wrote "The Parliament of Foules" (Fowls)
> which I read in somewhat cribbed Middle English back when I was an
> English major in college, but I don't remember (a) it (though if I had
> the energy I could leap from my seat and consult my old textbook); or
> (b) that there was a Persian original. Where would Chaucer have got it
> from? But I'm sure he did. Crowley is quite scrupulous with period
> details in -The Deep- (as I prove in my esssay on the same that so few
> of you [humiliatingly for me] wish to read).

*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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